Terrorizing medical research
by P. Michael Conn and James V. Parker - Dec. 8, 2008 10:55 AM
Special to The Washington Post
Terrorists have struck again. In the predawn hours one morning last month, they used an incendiary device to destroy two cars. You may not have heard about this, even though it followed a series of firebombings of homes and other vehicles. The attack didn't take place in Mumbai or Baghdad but in Los Angeles. Yet the news couldn't break through the reports on the holiday season and our economic woes.
The intended target of this violence, a researcher at the University of California at Los Angeles, was a scientist who uses animals in his work. But the terrorists, reportedly from an organization known as the Animal Liberation Front (ALF), had bad aim. The burned cars belonged to people with no relationship to UCLA or even to animal research.
Black comedy? No, because lives hang in the balance, and not just those of the intended targets, their families and anyone who happens to reside nearby. Because of such terrorism, many medical researchers are rethinking their choice of profession, putting all of us at risk of losing out on medical advances that can dramatically improve, and save, our lives. Read More
The instances of medical researchers being the victims of domestic terrorism continue to increase. Luckily, no lives have been lost yet but that seems to be only a matter of time with the continued use of explosives by these criminals. With very strict regulations in place that dictates how animals can be used for research, groups like ALF continue to place more emphasis on the comfort of these animals than the lives of humans.